Fancy a Move? These Cities and States Will Pay You to Relocate

Aerial view of Bar Harbor, Maine


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Aerial view of Bar Harbor, Maine

Money Movers

Moving can be expensive, but a range of cities and states offer everything from tax credits and down payment assistance to hundreds of thousands of dollars toward student loans and even free plots of land when you make a move. These locations, which range from rural cities to entire counties and states, provide financial perks that everyone from veterans to recent college graduates, families, remote workers, and prospective homebuyers can grab. 

Related: People Are Abandoning These 3 States

Tulsa skyline, pond, and fountains

Tulsa, Oklahoma


The Tulsa Remote program offers individuals looking to move to work remotely a $10,000 grant and a range of benefits to relocate to the city for one year. The city provides a community feel with affordable dining options, yearly festivals, and hundreds of acres of wilderness areas. Additional benefits include specials on centrally located apartments and offices in coworking spaces, with those interested required to be at least 18 years old, have remote or self-employment outside of Oklahoma, the ability to move to Tulsa within 12 months, and eligibility to work in the United States.

Related: Underrated Places to Retire Across America

O'Neal Bridge - The Shoals, AL (Southern Bluff View)
O'Neal Bridge - The Shoals, AL (Southern Bluff View) by Brent Moore (CC BY-NC)

The Shoals, Alabama


If you make more than $52,000 a year, are 18 years or older, have a remote or self-employed job outside of Colbert and Lauderdale counties, and can move to the charming music destination of the Shoals area on the banks of the Tennessee River, you can get paid $10,000. You get 25% upfront to help with relocation costs, 25% after your first six months in the Shoals, and the rest after completing a year of work.

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Charleston, West Virginia, USA downtown skyline on the river at dusk.
Sean Pavone/istockphoto

West Virginia

$12,000 and free outdoor gear rentals and activities

West Virginia is home to more than 1.5 million acres of public lands and more than 2,000 miles of trails that are prime for outdoor enthusiasts, who can get to enjoy them for free through the Ascend WV program. In addition to $12,000 for moving there, remote workers also get one year of free outdoor recreation activities ranging from whitewater rafting to zip lining and skiing and free outdoor recreational gear rentals at a value of more than $2,500. Featured cities for applications regularly change, so be sure to check in when choosing to apply.

Fayetteville, Arkansas

Northwest Arkansas

$10,000 and a bike or membership to a local arts/cultural institution

If you’re 24 years or older, eligible to work and live in the United States, have a remote job or are self-employed, and can move to Northwest Arkansas within six months of being approved, you can get a $10,000 cash incentive and a street or mountain bike to enjoy the more than 150 miles of paved streets and more than 200 miles of biking trails the area has to offer. For those who would prefer frequent visits to one of the area’s noted arts and cultural institutions, you can also opt to get a free annual membership.

Mankato, Kansas
Mankato, Kansas by Jimmy Emerson, DVM (CC BY-NC-ND)

Mankato, Kansas

Free lot

The city of Mankato, in the heart of Jewell County, is one of several locations in Kansas that offers free lots near local high schools, hospitals, and restaurants. Those looking to take advantage will need to be preapproved for construction from a lending institution, be interviewed by the city council, have a home that will be at least three bedrooms and 1,200 square feet in size (excluding basements, garages, and porches), and follow a few other specific guidelines.

Related: Things to Consider When Buying a House After 50

Hamilton, Ohio

Hamilton, Ohio

$10,000 scholarship for STEAM grads

Hamilton has several scholarships in place for students and recent graduates, including the Talent Attraction Program Scholarship, which awards those having graduated within the past seven years from a science, technology, engineering, the arts, or mathematics program who will be moving to the area up to $10,000. To be eligible, applicants will also need to show proof of employment within Hamilton or Butler County.

Ontario, Oregon

Ontario, Oregon

$10,000 for new home construction

Perched on the banks of the Snake River, Ontario provides access to magnificent river canyons and soaring mountains, and the recreational activities they offer. Through housing incentives, individuals can get $10,000 in cash toward building either single-family homes greater than 1,600 square feet or homes of more than 1,350 square feet that include a two-car garage and two bathrooms. The home needs to be finished within two years of approval.

Few are around on Sunday at the Kansas state capital building in Topeka KS

Topeka, Kansas

Up to $15,000 for housing

Family-friendly Topeka, with its affordable housing, booming arts and culture scene, historic sites, and lakes and nature trails, will pay up to $15,000 for talented professionals looking to explore its offerings. Through the Choose Topeka program, workers whose employers participate can get up to $10,000 in funds for renting for the first year and up to $15,000 in funds when buying a home. (Ask about an additional $1,000 bonus if you relocate within one of the Jimmy John’s sandwich chain’s three delivery zones!)

Baltimore, Maryland, USA Inner Harbor Skyline Aerial Panorama


Lottery for $5,000 toward a down payment, closing cost assistance, and a five-year forgiveness loan toward a home

Each year, 20 participants can win the Buying into Baltimore incentive via a lottery, giving them $5,000 toward their down payment, closing cost assistance, and a five-year forgiveness loan. To be eligible, participants need to live in the home as their primary residence, contribute at least $1,000 toward the home purchase, and have a mortgage that does not exceed $583,050 for a single-family home.

Harmony, Minnesota
Harmony, Minnesota by photolibrarian (CC BY-NC-ND)

Harmony, Minnesota

Up to $12,000 toward new home construction

This small town maintains its local charm, offering a range of biking trails, caves to explore, fishing and wildlife opportunities, historic Amish communities, and brewery and distillery tours. The Residential Home Construction Rebate offers rebate amounts starting at $2,000 all the way up to $12,000 for those building a home. The rebate amount is dependent on the market value of the home and will be paid to the homeowner after completing all its exterior features.

Savannah Waterfront

Savannah, Georgia

Up to $2,000 toward moving expenses

The historic city of Savannah, known for charming cobblestone streets and towering oaks, has been offering up to $2,000 in reimbursements for technology workers who move to the area, whether self-employed or working remotely for firms outside Chatham County. You need at least three years of experience in the field and a minimum one-year lease or a property purchase to qualify. Businesses can also get up to $20,000 in cash grants for every five high-tech jobs they create and retain for at least one year.

Elmwood, Nebraska
Elmwood, Nebraska by RLEVANS (CC BY-ND)

Elmwood, Nebraska

Free lot

The village of Elmwood is between Lincoln and Omaha, putting you near cities while offering the relaxing atmosphere and friendly community feel of a small town. It is also close to nature areas and attractions such as the Eugene T. Mahoney State Park and the Strategic Air Command and Space Museum. If you’re able to start construction within a year and occupy your new home with two years of your purchase date, you can claim a free lot. The lots require a $500 deposit, returned after the home is complete.

Natchez National Historic Park - Mississippi

Natchez, Mississippi

Up to $6,000 toward moving expenses

Natchez offers quaint Southern charm with its moss-covered oaks, lush gardens, historic sites, walkable downtown area, and scenic locations along the Natchez Trace, which stretches to Nashville. Through its Shift South program, remote workers can get up to $6,000 toward relocation expenses when moving to Natchez or Adams County and committing to buy a home valued at $150,000 or more.

Related: Beautiful Road Trips That Celebrate American History

Curtis, Nebraska
BOB WESTON/istockphoto

Curtis, Nebraska

Free lot

Curtis, in Frontier County, calls itself “Nebraska’s Easter City” after an annual Easter pageant but is also home to the largest two-year agriculture school in America. It has several available incentives that include free  lots for constructions of single-family homes, as well as free land for industrial or commercial buildings. Families with children 18 or younger who move here and enroll in Medicine Valley Public Schools can get up to $1,000.

Des Moines Skyline and Walking Bridge at Night


Up to $200,000 toward student loans

Iowa offers a range of loan repayment programs for professionals who can work in areas with designated shortages in their field for periods typically ranging between four and five years. Various awards are available, with a maximum of $200,000: the cap for teachers is set at $4,000 a year; for health care professionals ranging from physical therapists to podiatrists at a maximum award of $50,000; and for veterinarians a maximum award of $60,000.

Lincoln County Courthouse  (KS) 3/4
BOB WESTON/istockphoto

Lincoln, Kansas

Free lot

The city of Lincoln offers a safe small-town environment with a range of locations on the National Register of Historic Places and wildlife that can often be seen roaming across  rolling hillsides. A free home program provides lots ranging from 14,000 to 35,000 square feet a few blocks from its local high schools, hospitals, football fields, parks, and downtown. Homes need to be at least 1,300 square feet and follow specified design guidelines.

Detroit Aerial Panorama


Up to $300,000 toward student loans for medical professionals

Michigan is another state that has loan repayment programs for eligible workers in medical, dental, and mental health care fields. The state offers up to $500,000 in tax-free loan repayment funds that are issued over up to 10 years (raised from the$200,000 over eight years that was offered in 2021). Professionals will need to work for two years at specified nonprofit sites at a minimum of 45 hours per week to qualify (up from 40 weeks).

Newton, Iowa
Newton, Iowa by David Wilson (CC BY)

Newton, Iowa

Up to $10,000 for a home purchase and $2,500 in offers from local businesses

The family-friendly destination of Newton, which boasts attractions such as the Iowa Speedway, museums, botanical gardens, and dairy farms with cheese aged in caves, provides up to $10,000 cash to new homeowners for homes valued at $190,000 or more.

Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA Cityscape
Sean Pavone/istockphoto

Southwest Michigan

Up to $15,000 grant toward a home purchase

The coastal communities that line Southwest Michigan, home to prime beaches, top-notch cuisine, good school systems, and family-friendly environments, provide up to $15,000 in a forgivable grant when buying a new home that costs at least $200,000 in specified ZIP codes. You need to be working full-time remotely for a company outside of the area, but the package also includes your choice of options ranging from car service to and from regional airports for a year, annual South Shore rail passes, a one-year co-working space membership, annual passes to local beaches and golf ranges, and more.

The Delaware River Flows Smoothly By Wilmington at Dawn


Up to $100,000 toward student loans for medical professionals

The state of Delaware’s State Loan Repayment Program provides between $30,000 and $100,000 awards to dental and medical professionals with advanced or midlevel degrees that can commit to working for at least two years in medically underserved areas. Professionals will need to be working either full-time at 40 hours per week or part-time at 20 to 39 hours per week to get the loan assistance awards.

Macon Georgia Skyline


$10,000 to $25,000 per year toward student loans

Georgia offers several loan repayment programs — now open widely after once being available only to physicians, dentists, physician assistants, and registered nurses willing to work in underserved communities in rural counties with populations of 50,000 or less. The program still functions for people moving to targeted areas.

Baltimore Aerial with Patapsco River / Waterfront


Up to $30,000 toward student loans

Looking to buy a house and pay off your student loans at the same time? Maryland’s SmartBuy 3.0 program allows you to do just that, offering up to 15% of your home’s purchase price at a cap of $30,000 to help pay off your student loans. You need to be able to pay off your full student loan when purchasing the home and must have at least $1,000 of loans left to pay off before applying.

Tucson Arizona skyline cityscape and Santa Catalina Mountains at sunset

Tucson, Arizona

$7,650 toward moving and remote work expenses

Tucson, touted as one of the top cities to live in America on several lists thanks to its walkability, affordability, urban offerings, and green spaces, offers remote workers cash incentives valued at $9,000 to make a move. These include $1,000 toward moving costs, office spaces at a $1,500 value, free internet for a year at a value of $1,500, assistance with real estate offerings, and career support services of $700.

Augusta, Maine, USA


Up to $25,000 in student loan aid via tax credits

Maine provides a $2,500 annual refundable state income tax credit, for up to $25,000 in lifetime value, through an Opportunity Maine Tax Credit that helps pay off student loans. (On hold in 2022: An Alfond Leaders Student Debt Reduction Program for more recent graduates, which offered up to $60,000 in student loan payments for those that are in science, technology, engineering, or math positions with an employer in Maine.)

Lafayette Courthouse 1

Lafayette, Indiana

Up to $5,000 moving stipend and discounted offers

If you’re looking to expand your education and career while working away from home, consider the Work from Purdue program that awards workers a moving stipend of between $1,000 and $5,000 in addition to 50% off co-working spaces, housing discounts, and access to the school’s facilities and its entrepreneurial program.

Bloomfield, Iowa
Bloomfield, Iowa by Jo Naylor (CC BY)

Bloomfield, Iowa

Up to $15,000 toward new home construction

Bloomfield is home to historic architecture, waterparks, Dutch villages, and farms that make for a relaxing, family-friendly environment. The location has been offering housing incentives for several years, with its most current including up to $15,000 for the construction of single-family and two-family homes. Cash offers range depending on the assessed value of the home, with $10,000 given for homes between $150,000 and $200,000, $12,500 given for homes between $200,00 and $300,000, and the full $15,000 awarded for homes valued at $300,000 and up.

New Richland, Minnesota
New Richland, Minnesota by Jonathunder (CC BY-SA)

New Richland, Minnesota

Free land

New Richland offers a true small-town feel, where locally owned and independent small businesses and community gatherings prevail. Through its Homestake Free Land Program, those who move to New Richland can get a free 86-by-133-foot plot of land to build a home on. The only catch is you need to build the home within a span of one year.

Grant County, Indiana

Grant County, Indiana

Up to $7,500 in down payment assistance

Grant County is an affordable destination with access to numerous trails for biking and hiking. Through the Grants for Grads program, new residents can get $7,500 in down payment assistance when buying a new home. The program works by offering $2,500, and the full $7,500 if your employer chooses to match the offer.

Bemidji, Minnesota

Bemidji, Minnesota

Up to $4,000 toward moving and remote work expenses

It’s no surprise that the first city on the Mississippi River sits nestled among a range of lakes, scenic parks, and waterways. The area is known to host some of the state’s deepest and clearest lakes, which is why it’s noted as a fishing destination. Through its 218 Relocate program, remote workers can take advantage of its scenery while getting  a one-year membership to co-working spaces in its historic Mayflower Building at a value of $1,500, six months of free internet, and free access to its Community Concierge Program to make getting connected to your new home easier.

Orange County, Southern Indiana
Orange County, Southern Indiana by Don Barrett (CC BY-NC-ND)

Orange County, Southern Indiana

$5,000 for veterans

Veterans who are under 45 and looking to either head back to or move to Orange County — home to several towns surrounded by the Hoosier National Forest — can get a $5,000 check after making the move. Veterans will need to live in Orange County for at least two years and have an address in the county when applying to qualify for the incentive.

Related: Veterans Benefits You Don't Want to Miss

Sail boat racing

St. Clair County, Michigan

$15,000 for STEAM grads

Bordering the banks of the St. Clair River, the county of St. Clair offers both walkable downtown areas, expansive vistas, and ample boating opportunities. The county’s Come Home Award provides up to $15,000 to graduates who have completed a degree in a science, technology, engineering, art, or math field within the past 10 years.

Night Scene from Downtown Regina

Saskatchewan, Canada

CA$20,000 toward tuition

Saskatchewan is a natural playground with its prairies, lakes, forests, and dunes. If you live in the area and file a tax return here, you can take part in the Graduate Retention Program and get up to $20,000 of your tuition fees paid off. The amount you get is based on how much tuition you paid, with the full $20,000 awarded for four-year undergraduate programs. You need to apply within seven years of graduating and either already live here or be moving here to be considered (and Americans should note that the grant is about $15,257 in U.S. dollars).

Related: Things Americans Don't Know About Canada